First the facts… FBI research shows that 80% of active shootings occur at work and 40% of businesses do not reopen after a disaster occurs. Another 25% fail in the following year. Despite this risk, 48% of businesses have no violence prevention or response training plan.
Sadly, almost all active shootings are over in less than five minutes… before law enforcement can arrive at the scene.
First Defense Solutions gives your Frisco business the tools you need for active shooter awareness, incident response, and workplace violence. Providing training and risk mitigation strategies, First Defense guides organizations on how to avoid, mitigate, and recover from active shooter and other threat situations.
Launched in January 2016 by Heidi Wysocki and Ed Pietrowski, First Defense Solutions began the same way many companies start. Heidi says,
We saw a problem and wanted to fix it. Initially, we focused on protecting schools and houses of worship, where there is immense opportunity to enhance security. We created a training program based on the timeline of a crisis… addressing what happens before, during, and after an event. Our training involves multiple modules and covers critical items from situational awareness and pre-attack indicators, to injury prevention and making good decisions when you’re in a threatening situation.”
Although First Defense started with a focus on schools, given the increasing frequency of active shootings in all manner of locations, combined with countless discussions with local small business owners, we realized that our solutions are equally applicable to various industries.
According to research from Travelers Insurance, nearly 65% of all small businesses either fail to reopen after a crisis or shutter completely within a year. The sheer impact of what that sort of loss would do in our community underlines the importance of business continuity and making sure that our fellow small businesses are able to thrive, even if they face a tragedy.
The First Defense Solutions Difference
Many small businesses don’t invest in continuity management because they simply don’t know where to begin. First Defense Solutions offers alumni from PwC and KPMG consulting, trained in project management and nationally certified in disaster recovery management, at affordable prices. First Defense provides a full project plan or can start simply with a risk assessment to help your business decide how to prioritize and proceed. The goal is to get small businesses comfortable and fluent with business resiliency so they can secure the success they’ve built and maintain it through times of crisis.
First Defense Solutions straddles that comprehensive line between security and consulting. In the security industry, it’s rare to find consultants with corporate and “Big 4” backgrounds. That’s valuable to our clients because we are able to work with everyone across the company scope, from the Board of Directors or the CEO on down. Nobody does project management as well as the large consulting firms, but the cost can become too high. We bring that value to the table, at a fraction of the cost.
Meet the Team
First Defense is based on the expertise of our founder, Ed Pietrowski. As a nationally decorated law enforcement officer with over 15 active shootings and thousands of interactions with emotionally disturbed persons, Ed provides best practices and engaging training to help civilians stay safe in potentially deadly situations.
From a consulting company perspective, Ed’s background and expertise is generally unavailable.
While training resources exist, First Defense is able to partner with your company and tailor training to your specific industry or company concerns with a real-world spin on what would otherwise be dry “check the box for compliance” training that is easily forgotten, Ed says. We believe in robust discussion to emotionally and intellectually engage employees, so that the training is applicable when they need it the most.”
Since the mass shooting in Las Vegas, there has been a lot of interest in “Stop the Bleed” training, or triage first aid. As certified trainers for this program, First Defense has been working with different groups to teach as many people as possible how to apply a tourniquet properly, what sort of wounds are treatable in what ways, and other bleeding control techniques.
Get the Training
First Defense Solutions also spends a great deal of time training clients on what to expect from a physical perspective if you are in an extremely dangerous situation… Techniques to overcome the instinct to freeze in place, follow a crowd, or make other choices that could be unsafe. This “Situational Awareness and Tactical Decision-Making” training and knowing what to expect allows people to respond better in a crisis and create opportunities for a safer outcome.
We’re currently working on building out some free resources for continuity management which we hope will be a good starting point for a lot of companies. About 48% of small businesses have a continuity plan, but we want to increase that number.
We believe access to clear information is a great place to start, so keep an eye on our website for these resources. We’re always open to meet for a conversation and we’ll be offering seminars to share more information in person.”
Whether you are a 4 person team or a company with over 500 employees, you don’t want to miss First Defense Solutions “Active Shooter Response for Small Business” seminar on Thursday, January 25th, from 2pm to 4pm at the Frisco Chamber of Commerce, 6843 Main Street.
Offering this event to small businesses from all industries, First Defense will walk through what to expect in an active shooter situation and how to safely respond. This is a high level overview of what they do for Employee On-boardings and Town Hall meetings for companies, and our goal is to help you elevate the conversation around onsite safety in your office. This is a free training event and NOT a sales seminar.
With a goal to help Texas be a great place for small business, First Defense Solutions is working to ensure everyone has the tools they need to succeed and be safe at work.
Monday – Friday 7AM – 7PM
5700 Granite Parkway, Suite 200, Plano, TX 75024